Archives for July 2012

Jurisdictional Conference delegates support decision to retire Bishop Bledsoe

  OKLAHOMA CITY – Bishop Earl Bledsoe took to the microphone in his own defense Thursday, but South Central Jurisdictional Conference delegates voted to affirm an episcopacy committee’s decision that he be retired involuntarily. “I asked the committee and I’m asking you now:  Where is fair process, where at least I’m able to share my side of the story?” Bishop Bledsoe, leader […]

Q&A: Constant is the call for leadership

Leadership in the church has always been a daunting task. Fortunately, now as always, the early church offers some of our best resources for effective ministry, says Christopher A. Beeley, author of the new book Leading God’s People: Wisdom from the Early Church for Today (Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2012). Dr. Beeley is the Walter H. […]

Reflections: A passionate, witnessing faith

A recent experience greatly impressed me. A fine layman was asked to transport me from an airport to the hotel where I would be staying during an out-of-town visit. I was to be a guest preacher at his local church. We had hardly left the airport terminal when his enthusiasm for his faith became more […]

Dakotas couple brings holidays to young

It all starts with a sturdy shoebox. Add a dash of love—perhaps a fun toy, cozy mittens, a little bag of candy and the story of Jesus’ birth—and the results are smiles from children and gratitude from their parents who cannot provide those small gifts. Through “Shoebox Christmas,” Mike and Libby Flowers, United Methodist missionaries […]

Revised covenant will speed recovery in Haiti

By Anne Dukes, Special Contributor… LAKELAND, Fla.—One of the last official acts for Bishop Timothy Whitaker before his retirement was signing a revised Haiti-Florida Covenant in front of hundreds gathered for the final day of the 2012 Florida Annual Conference. The Rev. Gesner Paul, president of the Methodist Church of Haiti, joined Bishop Whitaker at […]

Rebuilding Middleburgh: Ten months after the 500-year flood

By Christian Vischi, Special Contributor… One irony of the 2011 flooding of Middleburgh, N.Y., was that there was too much water to save a barn from fire. One remnant of the damage done by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee is the many shuttered businesses and residences in this community of about 1,500 in Schoharie […]

Committee asks approval of vote to retire Bishop Bledsoe

OKLAHOMA CITY – The South Central Jurisdiction’s episcopacy committee found reasons to question Bishop Earl Bledsoe’s “integrity and trustworthiness,” the committee’s chairman, Don House, told delegates to the jurisdiction’s conference this morning. Those delegates will be asked this afternoon to approve the committee’s vote to retire Bishop Bledsoe involuntarily. “Bishop Bledsoe demonstrates many gifts. He’s […]

West Ohio Conference rides the crest of the missional wave

By Melissa Hinnen, Special Contributor… “God has got to be super happy,” Bishop Bruce Ough emotionally declared after a miracle offering at the West Ohio Annual Conference. By the close of the June 10-13 meeting in Lakeside, Ohio, the conference had raised more than $1 million for the Wings of the Morning aviation ministry. That […]

“Mrs. Gospel Music” bridged racial barriers

“Lead Me, Guide Me” Doris Akers The Faith We Sing, No. 2214  I am weak and I need thy strength and power To help me over my weakest hour Lead me through the darkness thy face to see Lead me, O Lord, lead me. Lead me, guide me along the way, For if you lead […]

Religious groups vie for Internet space in domain name grab

By Daniel Burke, Religion News Service… Religious groups have long vied for prime parcels of land, planting churches on town squares and monasteries amid isolated mountains. But now they’re targeting real estate in a less tangible sphere: cyberspace. For the first time in its history, the international nonprofit that doles out generic Internet domain names […]

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